August 7, 2017: Deceased Person Identified

On August 5, 2017 a body was found in the Kanawha River near Riverwalk Plaza in South Charleston, WV.  The Kanawha Bureau of Investigation was asked to assist with the investigation.  Today an autopsy occurred and the man’s identity was confirmed to be Howard Stiltner, 43 years old of Prennar, WV. 


Mr. Stiltner’s hands were handcuffed behind his back at the time it was found.  The subsequent investigation has determined he was the subject who escaped custody from South Charleston Police Department Officers on Thursday, August 3, 2017.  He had been arrested in that City for obstructing an officer, but fled on foot from the patrol car while walking into the police department to be booked.  Officers searched the area, including using a K9 from another department, that night, but were unable to locate anyone.  At that time his identity was unknown.  He had provided false information regarding his name and date of birth.


The formal report has not been completed by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of West Virginia.  However, there appeared to be no trauma to the body, and there was preliminary evidence drowning was the cause of death. 


The matter is still under investigation, and additional details may be released at a later time.


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